rollApp lets you run desktop apps, work with files, get things done — right from the browser on any device.

rollApp makes QGIS available online

Guest post by Andrew McClure, director AgSense (NZ)

A few weeks ago an email came in from the QGIS developer mailing list about this new provider that was offering QGIS in the cloud. Included was a link to rollApp

This was very exciting news. For the last few years we’d been working to develop a plugin to integrate temporal telemetry data into the spatial data tools provided via QGIS using the increasingly popular I.o.T (Internet of Things) protocol MQTT. We called our plugin Telemetry Layer (see screen shot with our farm below).


Finally we could offer farmers access to their farm maps (and telemetry data from their sensors) from anywhere with internet connectivity.

Moreover, it opens up a new paradigm of opportunities for the nascent UAV imaging/surveying industry — a cloud based QGIS project could have its raster layers updated by a 3rd party with high speed internet access. Additional 3rd parties could then access the data and provide analytics. The opportunities are many and varied.

On initial investigation we found a few glitches with the QGIS implementation available but Dima Malenko (CTO of rollApp) and the team at rollApp were quick to address these and get our plugin working. They have been great to deal with!

Today I used node.js to roll a generic dynamic mqtt proxy so that our clients will be able to login to a single host/port and have QGIS via the cloud connect to their local MQTT enabled sensor devices. All the pieces are in place for an I.o.T. solution — bar some minor tidy up.

Telemetry Layer has been open sourced if you are interested in our approach for your own project. See:

AgSense are available for consulting / development work in the area of agriculture and I.o.T.